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    Chief Complaint


    Organ System


    Patent Pending

    Rome III Diagnostic Criteria for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

    Official Rome III criteria for the diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome.


    Recurrent abdominal pain or discomfort, 3 days per month in the last 3 months (12 weeks), associated with ≥2 of the criteria below. The criteria are fulfilled with symptoms onset 6 months prior to diagnosis.
    When to Use
    Why Use

    Patients being evaluated for possible IBS.

    • The Rome III criteria help diagnose irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

    Points to keep in mind:

    • There remains no objective reference (i.e. ‘gold’) standard for IBS; the criteria were developed through a literature review and consensus process.

    The symptoms that define IBS are subjective and self-reported, making a classification system helpful. Moreover, there is evidence to support the notion that patients who meet formal Rome criteria may be more likely to respond to certain therapies.

    2+ required for positive diagnosis

    Diagnostic Result:

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    Next Steps
    Creator Insights
    Dr. Douglas Drossman

    About the Creator

    Douglas Drossman, MD, is professor emeritus of medicine and psychiatry at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. He is founder, President Emeritus and Chief of Operations of the Rome Foundation. He is also the founder of the Drossman Center for the Education and Practice of Biopsychosocial Care and Drossman Consulting, LLC. Dr. Drossman has written over 500 articles and book chapters, has published two books, a GI procedure manual and a textbook of functional GI disorders (Rome I-IV), and serves on six editorial and advisory boards.

    To view Dr. Douglas Drossman's publications, visit PubMed

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    MDCalc loves calculator creators – researchers who, through intelligent and often complex methods, discover tools that describe scientific facts that can then be applied in practice. These are real scientific discoveries about the nature of the human body, which can be invaluable to physicians taking care of patients.
    About the Creator
    Dr. Douglas Drossman
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